The population dynamics of the Galapagos Flightless Cormorant Phalacrocorax harrisi in relation to sea temperature

Tindle, Robert W., Tindle, Elizabeth, Vagenas, Dimitrios, & Harris, Michael P. (2013) The population dynamics of the Galapagos Flightless Cormorant Phalacrocorax harrisi in relation to sea temperature. Marine Ornithology, 41, pp. 121-133.

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The Flightless Cormorant Phalacrocorax harrisi is restricted to c. 400 km of the western coastline of the Galápagos archipelago coinciding with the local occurrence of seasonal upwelling of oceanic currents. Individuals frequently make more than one breeding attempt per year, usually change mates, and when juveniles are raised, females desert them to the further care of their mates who complete the rearing alone. Here we report data from a ten-year historical study of a colony stretching c.2 km along the coast-line and representing c. 12% of the total population of the species. The number of clutches laid and juveniles fledged were linked to the occurrence of cold water in off-shore foraging grounds. Most Flightless Cormorants have attachments to local stretches of coastline several hundred metres long. However, a few birds travelled many kilometres, including between colonies, sometimes over open sea. We show that males invest more in nest-building and feeding of the offspring than their mates, and we relate this to the (presumed) in-bred nature of the colony and to male and female reproductive strategies. Our data validate a published demographic model of the species (Valle 1995).

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ID Code: 59533
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: Presented at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS; Pacific Division) Symposium: ‘Galapagos Science, Conservation and History’. San Francisco State University (USA), June 15-17, 2015.
Keywords: Galapagos Islands, Flightless cormorants, Sea temperatures, Parental investment, Desertion, Dispersal, Breeding strategy
ISSN: 1018-3337
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY (060300) > Evolutionary Impacts of Climate Change (060306)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Division of Administrative Services
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 19 Sep 2013 22:20
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2015 22:58

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